Breakfast at Gupatji’s! #KelloggsWaleGuptaji

Everyone knows how important breakfast is for our health. They say,”Have breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper.” And I agree, having  hearty breakfast can regulate blood sugar levels and also help our energy stabilize through the day. Well that is just the health-side of the story but I also love how much variety is available in India for breakfasts. And no one knows this better than the Gupta family! They eat a different breakfast everyday!

I got introduced to the KelloggsWaleGuptaji ki family recently and have been loving their breakfasts a lot! There are four members in the family – Mr. Gupta, Mrs. Gupta, Ms. Gupta and Master Gupta and this little family believes in the grains! They always eat different variations of the Kelloggs cornflakes. After all life is too short to eat boring breakfast! And their recipes, presented by Ajay, are the quickest ad yummiest cornflakes recipes I have ever tasted!

So let’s meet the Gupta family!

I am a cereal lover, cornflakes and muesli have always been my thing but there is only so much variation that can happen in the simple form with milk. But the Gupta family has taught me that I can create over a hundred variations of dishes with Kellogg’s cornflakes being the key ingredient!

Some of their recipes look super enticing and I will be honest to admit that I could never have thought of some of the innovative ideas they use for their breakfast recipes. I have usually used Kellogg’s cornflakes with milk and slowly added a couple of my own variations but that was it for my experimentation with cornflakes. The Gupta family have really opened up my mind for the limitless possibilities with cornflakes.

One of my most favorite recipe is the Cornflakes Coconut ladoos recipe. I am a huge coconut fan so I think it the best thing someone can offer to me for breakfast. It is also easy to make and tastes super yummy. The nutty flavor with the crunch of cornflakes make this recipe a perfect breakfast option.

I lied!

Cornflakes Coconut ladoos is my favorite recipes in sweets, because I have a favorite in the savory category as well, it is Cheesy Cornflakes. I never thought that microwaving cornflakes can deliver such yummy and savory food!

The Gupta family have many more Cornflakes recipes for breakfast and I am sure it would be fun to be invited to breakfast at the Gupta’s. But how should I get myself an invite? I am already hatching a plan to befriend Mrs. Gupta or maybe become a tutor to Romu to make a ground for getting invited for breakfast! It is time to execute Plan A, do you have any ideas?

The Best Day of my Life!

One of the quotes that I can totally relate to at this stage of my life is written by John Ed Pearce – “Home is a place you grow up wanting to leave, and grow old wanting to get back to.”

When I was younger especially in my teen years, I really wanted to get out of my home. I felt too protected and suppressed in the confinement of my home. It felt as if my life would not start until I moved out. Of course my parents found it amusing and disheartening at the same time.

Obviously I did not realize at the time but it was really selfish of me to behave that way, well teenage can do that to you! So when I turned 21 and moved out of the house to pursue higher studies and start working, I could not contain my joy.

Within one month, life made me realize how much I wanted to be back home. It took me sometime to finally admit it to others but I had no options of backing out. So for 4 years I lived away yearning to go back home every single moment. And the day I completed my assignment and studies, I finally quit and went back to my hometown to live a couple of months before I got married.

My birthday was 6 days before my wedding date and after that I did not get to celebrate my birthday with my family until 2015!

I had a couple of opportunities to go home but I waited until the exact day I knew I would get to celebrate my nephew’s birthday and mine in the same week!

It is always nice to be with the people who love you and celebrate your birthday but this year was special as I was turning 30! I wanted to hit this milestone with my loved ones. And I did.

During the day we offered prayers as a family also inviting some close friends and then had a homemade meal for everyone for lunch. In the evening my family threw a Western style birthday party for me – loads of snacks and cake in addition to laughter, love and dance!

my birthday dinner

It was so much fun to see my parents, in their late 60’s and early 70’s, doing their dance routines from their era and my nephews displaying their latest moves. We danced to songs from the 50’s  Bollywood movies and also the latest songs (of course Yo Yo Honey Singh) together!

I had never had so much fun on my birthday and it was wonderful to have my whole family blessing me for the future. There so much I have achieved in my life but nothing compares to the wealth I was given when I was born – a loving family.

On my birthday I was actually having a tough time since I had been waiting for some news on a project and it did not come in my favour. So I was not able to start my day very well. But then my mother gently reminded me to be more patient. She advised me to keep my cool as that is the only way to move on in life. She taught me that there is never a “last chance” in life if we keep working hard and moving forward.

I am glad I listened to her as a few days later I received a new project. It was not better than the one I lost but it was definitely something I really enjoyed doing. So my 30th birthday brought me a great lesson.

“You never lose, until you accept defeat and life keeps giving you chances till you keep taking them!”

My Present – My #StartANewLife Story!

Life is never fair or easy and it rarely goes according to our plans. We need to move along and change our plans. I had big plans for my life, there have been so many instances in my life where things seemed to be working according to my plan but something or the other went wrong and I ended up wounded and disheartened. It took me a long time to realize that what I wanted was not always the best for me and sometimes what happened was better for me in the long run. So here is a story of one time I had it all planned but it did not work out and I took a big decision that changed my life forever!

We had been dating for over 3 years and like any other relationship we had our ups and downs. I was just one of those girls who needed continued reassurance of love and he was one of those guys who cannot express their feelings. This led to a lot of rift between us. So while we continued being committed to each other, we were rarely happy together.

Something still kept us together. I am sure it wasn’t me because I tried every single way to break up and move on. Of course I kept coming back there was just something that brought me back.

So after the first few months of bliss followed by years of bickering, we were at a point in life where our commitment had been tested to the maximum.

And then one day, someone from an old forgotten past decided to make a comeback. It was not easy or possible to resist the charm of this ghost from my past but I was working full time and studying for my Masters so I had no time to spend time on this temptation.

And as they say, when a relationship breaks up, we complain and whine about everything that is wrong with the relationship but with time we only remember the good things. And the same thing happened to me.

I did not keep both of the sides unaware about each other either. I told them that was going to choose. And it wasn’t easy!

For a couple of  weeks this ghost from my past kept pleading me to redecorate my old broken dreams but “my present” made no effort to woo me or even acknowledge my emotional absence from the relationship. I was furious but also amused by the apparent arrogance of “my present” in the situation.

So after 2 weeks, this ghost from my past said something which brought back the memories of the day I had my heart broken for the first time. I was livid! I did not want to relive that day over and over again for the rest of my life. I wanted to move forward.

It was the day I decided to #StartANewLife and stay in my present with “my present” because I had realized that the past was over and I was no longer fit for what was essentially, my history.

The funny thing is that I was upfront about my decision and the decision process to both parties; and “my present” accepted it with open arms. More than year later, we got married and have lived happily ever after; well for the most part ;)

photo challenge

LOVE is… making a commitment to live two different lives as one

Now I cannot even imagine what my life would have been without “my present”!

Share your #StartANewLife story with me in the comments or leave a link of your blogpost about this topic so I can read it!

The Decision Maker in Our Home!

I recently shared a little story about my little niece ‘A’ on this blog. She was born in the last week of December 2014 and changed our lives forever! The love we never knew existed in our hearts found its way out at a mere glance of her. Now our happiness and sorrow is linked around that tiny little human being. And she is the only one we talk about all the time. Whether it is about how many times she poops, eats, smiles or how she sleeps; well even how different her poops are becoming!

And now that she is a little over 2 months old, we are seeing her little personality. We call her “Katty” (Catty) for the way she looks around at night, super alert and energetic, making tiny noises to get our attention while inspecting her surroundings. She also has bigger appetite at night where her consumption of milk is twice the amount she takes in the whole day. We have tried various ways but she refuses to sleep at night. I doubt that she even blinks once the sun sets!

However, she sleeps during the day and no matter how loud it is on the outside or whether we talk loud around her (not on purpose of course), she sleeps oblivious to everything around her. It is so funny to see her fall in milk coma during the day while becoming alert with each milk drop at night.

We know that children grow when they sleep and they need loads of rest so ensure that she sleeps as long as she want whenever she wants (well, of course she has chosen night time)! One of the main thing is keeping her dry while she sleeps because we need to wait for sometime to train her to tinkle on cue. We have tried many brands and one of the things which we recently discovered and have been loving ever since is the Pampers Baby Dry pants.

She used to get irritated with the wetness of the diaper pretty soon and it felt like we were changing her diapers all through the day. Now with the new dry pants, she has started to play more instead of just crying over the wet diaper.

Since she started recognizing objects around her, it is a total joy to read books to her. We know she doesnot understand anything but when I lay down beside her and hold the book at a reading distance, she looks at the book and all the colorful characters in the book. She also loves listening to songs, well I basically sing to her all the time, and she also likes talking.

These days she tried to makes noises to respond and sometimes even makes faces as if replying to me. Whenever she finds everyone quite, she makes noises to call for someone to pay attention to her. She is the first child in the family so we obviously love to be around her and she has gotten a bit spoilt because she is rarely put back in her crib. She stays in our laps most of the time and love playing and talking. These days she gets fussy when she is awake and in her crib. She just wants to be held, all the time!

And we are not complaining. We love having her around and her happiness is all that matters. It will not be an overstatement that she makes the decisions at home now or influences them because our lives and happiness revolves around her!

A New Day, A New Beginning – Look Up stories!

cartoon my art

Ms. Sunshine

I had been wanting to write about optimism and share my personal transformation story for a long time. So here is how it goes!

People say that the world has changed. They claim that it used to be a better place to live than it is today. The tabloids affirm this statement every day with news on global warming, increasing pollution, alarming crime rate and falling economies. Sometimes it seems that this is all everyone talks about. It can be emotionally draining to discuss what is wrong with the world. And since I wanted to look at the bright side of life so I say the world has not changed around me.

The sun rises everyday giving us the opportunity to start afresh, birds chirp in the trees in my front yard singing cheerfully like they did years ago, the green grass of my lawn invited me to feel it bare foot and refresh my mind, my loved ones caring for me and worrying about me just like they used to years ago. My world has not changed completely.

I was not always optimistic like this in fact I was the complaint box you would have ignored from miles away. I was never grateful for what I was given, something was always wrong and I left no stone unturned to let everyone around me know how awful my life was. I drove people away and continued being dissatisfied more from my life.

And then one fine day while I was happily finding faults with me in the mirror, I received an International call. It was an odd time for my family to be calling from India so I knew something was wrong. I picked up with my heart beating in my mouth and heard news that made the hair on the back of my neck stand.

My sister had called to inform me that my father had been hospitalized because he was breathing problems and during Angiography the doctor found two of his arteries 100% blocked and one partially blocked. My father was now going in for Angioplasty to have stents placed into his arteries.

For what seemed like eternity, I could not comprehend what I had just heard. I kept asking God why me? Why my family? Two days passed by slowly and my father, after a successful Angioplasty, was sent home with a prescription of strong blood thinners and bed rest.

After one week he decided to talk to me and spoke very slowly. I had tears rolling down my cheeks for finally getting to hear his voice. I acted bold and told him that I knew he would make it. He had the desire of seeing his daughter, me, and I wished to catch a glance of him too. He still asked me to stay in Sweden until my husband’s assignment finished and then come back with free mind. I obliged. I knew I did not have the strength to see my father, once a strong man, into a frail body.

After thanking God a million times for saving my father’s life and blessing science for its inventions, I started analyzing my attitude. And as I dug deeper I got infuriated with my mindset for life. It seemed that I had been ungrateful for everything I had and greedy for anything I did not or could have.

Right then I decided to change my life by altering my attitude.

This was also the time when I discovered the wealth of information in non-fiction books. Many authors said the same things in different ways and the biggest advice that struck a chord with me was about being thankful for little things in life.

It was one of the most difficult tasks in the beginning for me to do since I was accustomed to finding faults. But slowly I started enjoying the little things in life and I ensured that instead of praying for asking blessings, I started praying for singing praise. Words of thankfulness to the Higher Power who created this perfect world. My prayers healed my heart and I transformed.

And now, everything gives me a chance to be optimistic – the rising sun, the thunder storm, beautiful flowers in my garden, the chance to sip tea in the evening with a book in my hand, my spouse’s laugh when we indulge in friendly banter, the love in my parent’s eyes and many more. I have hopes of a beautiful future and I do see a dream home somewhere in the paradise on this planet!

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